Notes from the Past

Confederate "Reprints"

Advertising recently appeared (in two of our contemporary weeklies) offering 12 varieties, a set, of the general issues of the Confederate States, as "Reprints" at a price of 25¢.

As is well known, there never were any reprints of any of the regularly issued Confederate general issues, except from the plate of the 5¢ blue, De La Rue, London, design which was altered to 10¢, and from the plate of the 1¢ Calhoun design, which was altered to 2¢.  The sets are, of course, counterfeits, which I expected when I bought a set for examination.

The 1861, 5¢ green; 1862, 2¢ green and 5¢ blue; 1862 blue, De La Rue, and the 1¢ Calhoun, orange, are very well executed and may deceive many collectors.  The paper is very white and in the other values of the set, the colors are not so good.

"Produced at a huge expense from facsimile die plates."  As a matter of fact they are apparently zinc etchings reproduced from the set of "Fac-Simile Die Proofs" (in enlarged size), which August Dietz prepared about 16 years ago in advance of publication of his great book on the stamps of the Confederate States.  I doubt, though, that Mr. Dietz has given anyone permission to copy his reproductions, if his permission was asked.

The addition of counterfeits to a collection to serve as "space-fillers" usually casts an unfavorable reflection upon every other stamp in the album.

- George B. Sloane
Sloane's Column
January 26, 1935

 Posted December 3, 1999  

Index of 507 Notes from the Past

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